Facebook is kind of a mess right now. And there are plenty of equally messy reaction pieces cajoling you, and everyone you know, to delete your account in a massive middle finger to the web’s prevailing social network.
That’s the easy take and, honestly, we’ve experienced this mob response before. Did you #DeleteFacebook then? Me neither.
We think it’s worth considering a more measured approach. The sky might be falling, but you can still be a lot smarter about social media—what data you share with it and what data you let third-party apps and services see—without opting out of social networking entirely.
There’s still some good left in Facebook. Let’s consider all our options before doing anything rash.
Should you really delete Facebook this time? Maybe.
If you’re overly concerned about Facebook’s data-collection practices, you’ll probably feel a lot better if you start distancing yourself from the social network.
It’s healthier, too. Let’s recap the three major techniques you can try:
- Just stop using the social network
- Deactivate your Facebook account
- Delete thyself
When you’re ready to say goodbye, let Facebook know, and be prepared to stay away from your account.
Deleting everything about you takes some time—up to 90 days—and if you log back in before Facebook “wipes” your account, this might interrupt the process.
Change your mind, and you’ll have to start the countdown all over again.
The deletion process is fairly extreme, so make sure you’ve set up your digital life before you depart.
That includes transferring ownership of any pages or groups you manage to those who will carry the torch once your profile has vanished into the digital ether.
Don’t forget to log out of all Facebook sessions and remove the apps from your mobile devices. And don’t use Facebook’s single-sign-on feature to log into websites anymore, lest you accidentally stop your account’s deletion.
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Pass it on: Popular Science